This past Saturday, over 1200 runners flooded the back roads of Lebanon, NH to partake in the annual Lebanon Parks & Recreation Shamrock Shuffle 5k. The race also played host to the season opener of the NH Grand Prix Road Racing Series, which attracted some local competition from the state’s running clubs. A chilly, but sunny day provided the best weather the race has had in a few years and lots of runners were dressed in green to tackle the streets.
Once race director Paul Coats fired the pistol, a handful of Upper Valley Running Club men shot out to the front of the race. At the mile mark, Harrison Little (UVRC) led the charge, splitting a 5’20 with teammates Rich Smith, and Jeremy Huckins a few strides back. Little and Smith would break off from Huckins soon thereafter and battle it out most of the race. Smith took a slight lead with ~1k to go, but it was Little who would emerge victorious in 16 minutes 59 seconds. Gate City Strider Jeff Doroh would put in an impressive late charge and overcome a fading Rich Smith for the 2nd position in 17’13. Though Rich may not have closed the race the way he wanted to, he was still the top master in the field by a solid margin. Smith covered the 5000 meter layout in 17’15.
On the women’s side, former Colby Sawyer athlete Emily Urquhart would lead through the mile in 6’12 with Tara Geraghty-Moats hot on her heels. Though over the mile and a half, it was GMAA athlete Megan Valentine who would pick up the slack and challenge Urquhart all the way to the finish. Urquhart would wind up holding on for a narrow victory in 19’57, Valentine crossing the line with a 19’58 net time. UVRC trio Mary Peters (20’13), Megan Miller (20’24) and Nancy Dunbar (20’35) would claim the next few positions. Dunbar was also the top female master’s runner on the day.
Mike Giberti and Lorna Young were on the course and at the start/finish capturing the memories. Check out a race video from the mile mark and finish as well as photos from the ~4k mark: